Germany approves Leopard 1 delivery to Ukraine, wants purchase back Gepards from Qatar for Ukraine – media

Germany approves Leopard 1 delivery to Ukraine, wants purchase back Gepards from Qatar for Ukraine – media

The German army's Leopard 1A5 at the 2015 military day in Uffenheim, Germany. File photo: Rainer Lippert/Wikimedia Commons  

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The German government has approved the delivery of Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine from industrial stocks and is in talks over purchasing back 15 Leopard-1-based Flakpanzer Gepard anti-aircraft guns from Qatar for Ukraine, according to Süddeutsche Zeitung citing government sources, Reuters reports.

The Leopard tanks can be delivered to Ukraine anytime once they are repaired. Meanwhile, the companies Rheinmetall and Flensburger Fahrzeugbau Gesellschaft (FFG) want to recondition dozens of Leopards 1 tanks and could supply them to Ukraine if Kyiv was willing to buy them, Süddeutsche Zeitung wrote.

Back in April 2022, Rheinmetall chief executive Armin Papperger told Germany’s Handelsblatt business newspaper that the company was ready to deliver 50 Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine if Germany approves such a transfer.

Also, several German officials discussed with Qatar’s foreign ministry a possible purchase of 15 Gepard tanks that Doha had bought to secure the World Cup stadiums, Süddeutsche Zeitung said.

The Leopard 1 is an older version of the Leopard 2 tank that is still in military service in Greece, Türkiye, Brazil, and Chile.

Ukraine already operates up to four types of vehicles based on the Leopard 1 platform. Those in operation or promised to be supplied are the Gepard self-propelled anti-aircraft guns, the Bergepanzer 2 ARV armored recovery vehicles, the Dachs engineering vehicles, and the Biber bridge layers.

Before the German recent approval of tank supplies to Ukraine, Ukrainian officials stated that 12 counties were ready to send about 100 newer Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.

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